The Flying Italian - The Reykjavik Grapevine

The Flying Italian

The Flying Italian

Published September 15, 2009

Volare serves easygoing, affordable Italian in a backyard house off the main street Laugavegur. Opened a couple of months ago, its character still has some growing to do, but at least the location—a crooked backyard house by a hidden little square—works well for the Italian atmosphere.
On a weeknight, the restaurant is almost full. The menu is handwritten, short and simple covering a few antipasti (990 ISK), pastas (1690 ISK), meat and fish (2900 ISK) and desserts (990 ISK). Word has it there is a real Italian in the kitchen, to whom mother sends ingredients from The Boot.
Hungry as a wolf, I started with a ricotta filled tomato. More like roasted vegetables with red and green peppers and warm zucchini, this was good enough to skip the ricotta business altogether—but not exactly what the menu had promised. My date’s beef Carpaccio was a flat, flavourless disappointment.
Scared of the full gluttony of Italian dining, I went for the unorthodox choice of picking my main from the pasta menu. The ravioli with chicken were large, firm and filling, perfect comfort food for windy autumn evenings with a glass of Chianti.
My date moaned about not having been asked how he wanted his Beef Volare—beef steak with roasted vegetables, green beans and a mushroom sauce. The roasted vegetables were a highlight of the dish, but the steak cooked to the house preference he thought was overdone. Other than the meaty oversight, service was very friendly, alert and pleasant.
For dessert, I had an espresso and a panna cotta, just as creamy and sweet as you would want, while my date chose tiramisu to accompany his Lavazza: a satisfyingly soft, sweet experience. Both desserts were served with berries to give contrast to the sweet flavours.

  • Volare Laugavegur 55b
  • What we think: Gets you there but there´s some turbulence on the way.
  • Flavour: Easygoing Italian
  • Ambiance: Vo-la-re, oo-oo, Cantare
  • Service: Molto charming
  • Rating: 3/5
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